When we think about the “digital transformation” phenomenon and its effects on businesses, we likely focus on customer-facing operations like sales, marketing, and snazzy, user-friendly apps that make it easier to discover, learn about and buy products and services. And in all these visions of customer-facing optimizations, we tend to overlook what’s happening in the back office, content with Excel spreadsheets containing years’ worth of transaction and revenue data.

In reality, however, the digital revolution has made its way to the back office as well, and it’s been particularly powerful in optimizing the billing functions, from usage and rating to revenue management.

Much of the inspiration for this back-office transformation is a response to customers’ increasing leverage in the marketplace. No matter what service or product a potential buyer needs, they have an unprecedented variety of vendor options to choose from. When the user experience falls short in any way, that customer can easily choose to spend their money elsewhere. In fact, Forrester has found that 40 percent of consumers have a high willingness and ability to shift their spend, and as a result, businesses will experience 25 to 50 percent increases in revenue risk.

And the key driver of that customer experience? As one leader at one U.S. insurer explained in The Forrester Wave™, “My billing experience is my top touchpoint. It’s where I make or break my business goals, so it’s where I need to advance my strategy.” While the sales process and customer service are critical, of course, the billing experience — the final interaction — is the make-or-break moment that can turn a one-time buyer into a lifelong customer and evangelist. Or, if it doesn’t go well, it’s the moment that will cause the buyer to leave in a huff and share his negative experience with everyone he knows.

Hence the need to bring billing into the twenty-first century along with the flashier, front-office activities. And the primary vehicle for digital transformation in billing is adoption of intelligent billing platforms. You can learn more about them in our executive guide, but for the moment, here’s a breakdown of four ways the digital transformation is revolutionizing the billing process.

Keeping Companies Ahead of the Curve by Launching New Products & Services at Lightning Speed

Speed and agility are crucial to success in today’s ever-evolving, consumer-driven world. As customer needs and preferences change like the weather, businesses are compelled to keep them loyal and engaged by tailoring their offerings accordingly. But when back-office systems aren’t built to manage dynamic business models and expanding product catalogs, it becomes impossible to launch new or updated offerings quickly. In fact, MGI reports that 44 percent of companies see their legacy systems as a barrier to growth.

The result of this extended time to market? Lost revenue, missed sales opportunities, mismanaged transactions, and a dwindling customer base.

But intelligent billing platforms are designed to solve just this problem, enabling rapid changes in product, service, and pricing configuration and minimizing the time and headache involved in launching new offerings.

Learn more about streamlining the launch process with intelligent billing.

Managing Complex (and Changing) Billing Models with Ease

One of the key drivers of transformation in billing in recent years has been the shift from straightforward subscriptions and one-time purchases to more complex and varied billing models that enable customers to pay for only what they need — and enable businesses to increase revenue by charging for add-ons, upgrades, etc.

But again, legacy billing systems are a barrier here, as they’re designed to handle one or two billing models at limited transaction volumes. When it’s time to scale the user volume or update billing models, these systems require significant manual intervention, leading to billing delays and errors. But intelligent billing platforms are designed to juggle an array of customer-specific rules for complex, consumption-based usage models, ensuring up-to-date tracking and accurate invoices for every customer, every time.

Learn about some of the many usage and rating models intelligent billing platforms can handle with ease.

Improving Transparency—for Everybody’s Sake

MGI reports that 59 percent of businesses experience significant customer friction due to billing disputes and that 42 percent of companies experience some kind of revenue leakage. The likely culprit? A lack of transparency in the billing process driven by outdated or patchwork billing systems. These systems often require significant handholding and manual coordination among moving parts, with the result that tracking what’s going on behind the scenes becomes all but impossible. Small errors go uncaught and snowball, leading to invoicing and reporting roadblocks that cause major problems for both the business and its customers.

But by embracing the digital transformation and adopting an intelligent billing platform, business leaders can streamline their billing systems, automate processes, and, above all, ensure transparency every step of the way. That means both the finance team and the customers can see where every penny comes from, at any moment.

Learn more about the importance of transparency for the front and back office.

Integrating Systems for Streamlined Operations & Deeper Insights

One potential automation pitfall is that, today, there’s a platform to automate every facet of a business — from CRMs to credit card processors to order fulfillment and beyond. And with several disparate systems in place, businesses often find themselves spending more time and resources managing the systems than doing their actual jobs.

The key is to be sure these systems integrate with one another seamlessly to avoid redundancies or gaps in data and processes. And here again, intelligent billing platforms like the one from Gotransverse can solve this problem. Designed to automate system management and integrate with existing platforms and software, they bridge the gap between departments by triggering inter-system workflows and automating manual management processes.

Additionally, these platform integrations allow for improved reporting with deeper insights, empowering businesses to make more educated decisions and create more accurate forecasting than they could when they had to manually compile and format data from individual systems.

Learn more about Gotransverse’s advanced reporting opportunities.

There’s no two ways about it: digital transformation is here, and its implications for competitive businesses’ billing processes are powerful. To learn more about how Gotransverse can help your organization bring its back office into the twenty-first century, request your complimentary, personalized demo today!